San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

March 12th, 2009
Bobcats fall short in upset bid

STAFF REPORT

The Texas State Bobcats made it halfway to upsetting Nicholls State in the first round of the Southland Conference men’s basketball tournament in Katy Thursday, but finished short.

Nicholls State rallied in the second half for an 80-75 win, ending the Bobcats’ season at 14-16. Nicholls State upped its mark to 20-10 as it advanced in the tournament.

Texas State entered the tournament at the No. 7 seed, while Nicholls State was seeded second.

The Bobcats held Nicholls State to 35-percent field goal shooting in the first half and forced ten turnovers before intermission to take a 34-26 lead. But Nicholls State caught fire in the second half, making 62 percent (13 of 21) of its second half field goal attempts.

“I thought we did a great job of taking the things they wanted to do offensively away from them in the first half by being the aggressors on defense,” Texas State head coach Doug Davalos said. “In the second half, we played back on our heels a little bit and allowed them to do anything they wanted.”

Nicholls State punched back slowly, moving to within 43-28 with 16:31 left, then creeping ahead, 52-51, when Chris Iles made a jumper with 10:27 left.

From that point, the game became a free-throw contest, much to the advantage of Nicholls State, which took several more free throws. The Colonels took and made more free throws in the second half (24 of 32) than Texas State managed for the whole game (22 of 28). Nicholls State made 35 of 43 free throws for the game, winning despite making only 20 field goals against 23 for Texas State.

Brandon Bush led Texas State with 20 points, followed by 15 points for teammate Brent Benson. Ryan Bathie and Anatoly Bose both scored 20 to lead Nicholls State.

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